Body After Baby: 6 Months

September 3, 2014

With Grant reaching his 6 month milestone, it means I’ve reached mine as well. When I look in the mirror, I don’t feel like I look much different. I’m not a big scale person, and I very rarely weigh myself. I just know it isn’t telling me the whole story. I had reached my pre-pregnancy weight a while back, but my body was still not quite the same. I was a bit more squishy than I had been for sure.

Here I am one month post partum

1 month post partum

And then at four  months post partum

4 months post partum

Fast forward to today at six months

6 months post partum

I definitely can’t tell much of a difference in the last two photos, other than my hips. They have definitely shrunk back down to normal – I can fit into all of my pre-pregnancy clothes, shorts included!!! Yippee!!

Exercise

I think I have finally made the decision to go for the marathon in November. This past weekend, I was able to get in 15 miles on my long run, and I felt pretty good about it after. I was just under a 9 minute/mile pace. It is still significantly slower than I am used to, but it is also 80+ degrees and a million percent humidity each time I run outside. On days when I am inside on the treadmill, I notice I can go much quicker and I am not fatigued nearly as fast. The heat and humidity is a killer this time of year, especially here in Florida. I am going to give myself a few more weeks before signing up for the race, just so I can get in a 17 or 18 mile run. Once I reach that distance, I should be good to go for 26.2.

Eats

I really, really feel that my healthy and consistent eating is a huge factor to getting back to my pre-pregnancy clothes. We eat very healthy meals at home – I just make it a point to not buy crappy food. Usually, when we go out to eat, I tend to get fries or a yummy treat like that. I have noticed in the past few weeks, we have been eating more sweets than normal as well. I would love to cut back on that, as I feel much better without a lot of sugar in my system. Grant has regressed a little in the sleep department, so I am normally up around 3am with him. Fueling my body well makes a big difference in my energy levels later on in the day.

6 months post partum

My Mind

I am feeling great! The older (and bigger) Grant gets, the more and more we thrive as a family of 4 (yes, I’m including Winnie too!). In the beginning, its easy to feel a little locked up in your home. Now that he is a little more resilient and on a really great schedule, it is pretty easy to plan thing around him. This past weekend, we went to a friend’s house for a bbq. We brought the pack n play and set it up in our friends’ bedroom so Grant could get his nap in, and we didn’t have to worry about scooting out for nap time. I know this seems minimal, but it was a big win for us! A sleepy Grant is not a fun Grant, so having this flexibility was amazing. It’s the little victories in life :)

It has taken a lot of hard work, but I am thrilled to feel much more back to normal – at least, back to our “new normal” :)

 

Grant: 6 Months

August 29, 2014

It’s your half birthday little man! I truly can not believe the first half of your first year has already come and gone. Everyone always says how fast the first year flies by, and now I know what they mean. Every couple of weeks you are doing something new and exciting, and this month was definitely no different.

Grant 6 months

You had your first taste of real food this month. We started with sweet potatoes, but you were just not a fan. However, give you some butternut squash, and then we’re talkin’!

Grant first solid food

Aside from the solid food, you are still nursing like a champ! At the beginning of the month, I was actually a little concerned about my supply because you were eating so much – about 7-8 ounces at a time. Now, you are back down to the 5oz mark, which is much more manageable for your mommy. I am working on stocking up on our backup milk supply for when you go through another growth spurt.

Grant 6 months

Speaking of a growth spurt, just look at all those rolls! You are quite the healthy little guy. Everyone comments on how big you are. I wouldn’t have it any other way. The more rolls, the merrier! You are in 6-9 month clothes very comfortably and in size 3 diapers. We just picked up some new socks for you too – your feet are growing just as fast as the rest of your body!

Grant 6 months

We didn’t do any traveling this month like we had the past few months. You really thrive on a schedule, so keeping the weekends low key is great on your end. You usually take a small nap in the morning, a long nap after lunch, and then maybe even a third nap before daddy and I get home at night. It really just depends on the day.

Grant 6 months

You still love the water and splash like crazy during bath time. Those little feet go crazy! You roll around like crazy these days and have just recently started to pull your knees up to your tummy a bit when you are on your tummy. I have a feeling you are going to be crawling in the next month or so. Watch out world!Grant pool 6 months

You just sat up unassisted for the first time this week, and your daddy and I were so excited. You were so proud of yourself, Grant! It just one of many accomplishments you are achieving this year.

Grant sitting up 6 months

Each and every day, you talk like a maniac. I can’t wait for the day we can actually understand you because you sure do have a lot to say! We call you our little dinosaur because some of the noises that come out of that little body sound just like the animals!

Each and every day I spend with you, I learn a little more about how much fun it can be to do absolutely nothing but be surrounded by everything I’ll ever need, all at the same time. You light up my life, Grant, like no one else in the world can. Thanks for being you!

Refreshing (and Healthy) Snacks I Love

August 27, 2014

Snacks are always at the top of my mind – these days, I am always looking forward to my next meal! Between breastfeeding and the crazy Florida summer heat, refreshing items are always the best option.

Cherry Tomatoes

I used to not be able to stand the taste of tomatoes. Now, after having Grant, I can’t get enough of them. It is seriously the strangest thing! I have a little bowl of grape tomatoes every day after finishing up my lunch. The high water content help to keep me full and feeling refreshed.

Cherry Tomato

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Sugar Snap Peas

I am all about texture when it comes to food. I tend to want to reach for chips over cookies any day of the week. Sugar snap peas have the crunch I love without all of the oil and empty calories that plaque potato chips. Depending on the exercise I did that day, I’ll sprinkle a little salt on them as well to get my sodium fix. With the amount I sweat running these days, a little extra sodium is what I need sometimes.

Iced Coffee

No explanation needed here. Iced coffee = life line.

iced-coffee

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Blended Teas

Instead of putting iced tea over ice, blend it like you would a smoothie or other frozen drinks. Starbucks will even do this for you. I suggest unsweet passion tea. It is super tasty!

Frozen Grapes

These are the best! You can’t get much more refreshing on a hot summer day than frozen grapes. I do recommend measuring them out though. Grapes actually pack a large amount of sugar. Instead of eating out of the big bag, pour them into a small bowl or snack size ziploc to avoid getting to much of the sweet stuff.

Hard Boiled Eggs

I know – this one is a little weird. Hard boiled eggs are a great afternoon snack that doesn’t weigh you down. They are packed with protein to keep you feeling full for a longer period of time too! Check out this post on the perfect way to hard boil them!

hard-boiled-egg-1

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Carrots and Hummus

Since I have pretty much cut out dairy, sometimes it is hard to find a refreshing dip. I used to make healthy dips with plain greek yogurt all the time. Now, I am turning to hummus more and more. It isn’t heavy and doesn’t weigh me down like some other foods. My favorite is the jalapeno & cilantro hummus from Publix. It is so so delicious!

Watermelon

Again, this is another food I wasn’t a huge fan of before having Grant, but given the high water content, I can’t get enough! It is so refreshing and perfect for hot Florida summer days. Grabing a piece of watermelon post race is the best!

What are some foods you find refreshing in these hot months?

The Many Thoughts During A Long Run

August 26, 2014

4:25 am: Alarm starts beeping. Do I really do this on my own will?

Alarm

4:28 am: I could totally do this tomorrow. Sunday sounds way better than Saturday.

4:30 am: No, I gave up having wine last night, knowing I would be running this morning. Tonight calls for a glass of vino. Running today it is.

4:35 am: Ok, I’m out of bed. Bring it on 14 miles.

4:35-4:45 am: Time to pump. Can’t run for 2+ hours with super full boobs!

4:50 am: OK, let’s get this thing started. Not so sure I am going to make it the full distance today. So tired!

5:00 am: Alrighty, finally starting to wake up a bit. Let’s see how I feel before throwing in the towel on the whole distance.

5:15 am: 2.5 miles – Water fountain, where are you!? It’s a humid one today!

5:30 am: Meet up with the run group. Happy to have 75 other crazies like me ready to pound the pavement this early!

5:40 am: 6 miles: I love running in this neighborhood. There are so many beautiful houses to look at.

5:45 am: Am I really trying to train for a marathon?? How on Earth have I already ran (and trained for) 8 of these things?!

5:50 am: 7 miles: At our first group water stop. Guzzle down a couple of cups and then keep on trucking!

6:00 am: 8 miles: Running down the one street with no lights. Don’t step in the pothole and trip. Don’t step in the pothole and trip.

6:10 am: Oooohhh sprinklers! I could definitely run through those and cool off.

6:11 am: Maybe not such a great idea. Wet socks for the rest of the run = no bueno.

6:20 am: 10 miles: Second group water stop. This one has Gatorade. Thank heavens for Gatorade.

6:28 am: Do another loop and hit that Gatorade stop again. Maybe I should just cut this run short. 12 miles is just as good as 14, right?

6:35 am: 12 miles: Well, I got this far. Maybe I should do 13 to make it a half marathon

6:45 am: Arrive home. Sun starts to rise.

sunrise

6:50 am: Walk upstairs and see Winnie wagging her tail. Looks like she is bummed she didn’t get her run in this morning

6:52 am: Leash up the pup and set out for one more mile. It is always tough to stop running and then start back up. Luckily, Winnie is taking it easy on me this morning.

Winnie Gentle Lead

7:00 am: Get back home for the second time, now with a total of 14 miles complete. That makes for one accomplished runner and another happy dog!

7:05 am: A certain little baby is stirring. Perfect timing :)

grant pj's

The Most Valuable Advice

August 21, 2014

Before any big life event, people tend to give loads of advice. Whether you are going off to college, starting your first job, or getting married, words of wisdom come at you from all directions. Pregnancy is no different. You have a million tidbits of advice and it is nearly impossible to really know what to pay attention to. The only way to really know is one thing – your baby’s birthday. Here are pieces of advice I really learned to take to heart once Grant was born.

Sleep when the baby sleeps

I am pretty sure everyone told me this and I pretty much just smiled and nodded. Like Nike says, just do it. Who cares if your laundry is piled up, the kitchen is a mess, and you haven’t showered for 48 solid hours. Even 20 minutes of shut eye make a world of difference when you are caring for a newborn. Follow this one for sure!

Grant 3 weeks

Time flies

Wow – this one is way more real no, for sure. You will wake up one day and your baby will be 6 months old. How on Earth does that happen! The milestones are coming like crazy and I still can’t believe it. Grant will be crawling in no time and then we really won’t be able to stop him! My friend Callie told me a little phrase that I really take to heart – the days are long but the years are short. How true this is truly becoming!

Babies don’t need much

Stores make you think otherwise, but in those first few months, you really only need diapers, some onesies, milk (or formula)and a place for your baby to sleep (which ends up being right on you a lot!). There are so many crazy gadgets and items out there retail shops convince you that you have to have. Don’t fall for it. I know babies are pricy, but they don’t have to be THAT expensive. Our parents got a long just fine without wipe warmers, bottle warmers, and 4 different swings.

Grant Marcus newborn

There is poop

Oh.My.Gosh. – so much more than I ever thought possible! How does a little person produce this much!? And why does it make its way up his back so frequently? One of the many unknown wonders of the world. I was very surprised to find out that breastfed baby poop doesn’t smell. I know plenty of people know this, but I had no idea. I can say it was a very pleasant surprise!

Don’t go crazy buying clothes

This is definitely a big one. I am pretty sure Grant cycles through about 10 outfits. He wears them, they get washed, and then put on the top of the pile in his drawer. Then, the cycle continues. I put away all of his 3 month clothes last weekend, and there were so many outfits he had worn just once or not at all. If you have the urge to buy your little one clothes before he or she arrives, just wait! Generous friends will take care of that for you. People just can’t help buying adorable things for babies. It’s like a reflex for women 😉

Marcus and Grant 5 months

Being a mom is tough

I think you hear people say this, but it really doesn’t sink in until you have that little baby in your arms. Not only do you need to spend time with your baby, but you go to work, cook dinner, clean, spend time with your husband, play with the dog – and the list goes on and on and on. There will be about a million times when you wonder if you are doing this so called mom thing right. The beauty of it is that there are so many different ways to raise a child. As long as you raising them in a loving, caring home, you can’t ask for anything else.

Go easy on the visitors

Ok, so this one I didn’t hear from anyone, but it is something I definitely will take into account for #2. Everyone is so excited to meet your new addition and you feel like you have to let everyone come as soon as they can get there. Give yourself some time in between guests. If some people don’t make it until the baby is a month old – that’s ok. With the lack of sleep and the stimulation overload, visitor after visitor can be pretty exhausting. When they do come and visit, don’t be afraid to ask for some help from them. Get them to take your dog on a quick walk or have them put your clothes from the washer to the dryer. They’ll be happy to help you – really.

Grant grocery cart

Don’t Compare

This is the easiest trap to fall into, and the greatest advice to receive. Every baby hits each milestone at a different time and pace. Don’t worry if your little one isn’t crawling at the same time as your niece did or didn’t get teeth when your Facebook friend’s kid did. It doesn’t matter. Your baby will reach each and every milestone when he or she is ready. If you really are worried about it, call your pediatrician and ask them about it – stay off all the crazy message boards out there.

What other valuable advice did you receive before your baby came along that you can look back on and appreciate now?